Saturday, February 12, 2011

Rainforest insects in Table Mountain of Manokwari

We are still in rainy season now and green leaves from the vegetation in the rainforest of the Table Mountain of Manokwari grow well. This is a time when rainforest insects such as grasshopper and beetles eat the young green leaves as much as they like to. While hiking in the Table Mountain of Manokwari last November 2010, I came across with various kinds of grasshopper that were eating the young leaves or just taking a rest on a small twig of a tropical plant. Some has colors that look like the plants which they were holding whereas others have dark brown colors.
There are thousands of species of rainforest insects in the tropical rainforest of Manokwari. Unfortunately, I could not identify them all. All I know about them are their main type names such as mosquitoes, beetle, wasp, grasshopper, orb spider, dragonflies, and butterflies.
Insects are delicious food (prey) for birds and lizards. As part of food chain, insects eat the young leaves of forest trees and bushes but they will be eaten by lizards, and birds. Insects are important for the environment because some of them such as butterflies are agents of pollination for flowers plants.
Ecotourism activities which tourists can do in the Table Mountains of Manokwari that are related to rainforest insects are insect watching, and photographing. Because the rainforest in the area is protected by government, insect collecting is simply not allowed. Other activities that I recommend is hiking, caving and mountain biking. The tropical rainforest of the Table Mountain is not far from the city. It takes only less than 15 minutes to reach it by public transportation such as ojek and taxi. Don't forget to bring some snacks, water, and mosquito repellent lotion if you want to walk through the forest. For those who want to do the caving trip, hiking shoes and lamps are needed for that purpose. by Charles Roring
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